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Dentons wins two CSR awards for the Greece Pro Bono Collaborative

Dentons has won two awards, together with five other firms, for its involvement in the Greece Pro Bono Collaborative. The Collaborative received awards for ‘Innovation in Social Responsibility’ at the Financial Times Innovative Lawyers Awards Europe, and for ‘CSR Innovation (Multi-Firm) at the Legal Innovation Awards.

In addition to Dentons, the other members of the Collaborative include Orrick, Herrington & Sutcliffe; White & Case; Ashurst; Allen & Overy; Charles Russell Speechlys; and the NGO, European Lawyers in Lesvos (ELIL).

There are more than 100,000 asylum seekers in Greece, most of them living in terrible conditions. Based on the island of Lesvos, the Collaborative aims to assist with the migration crisis by increasing migrants’ access to legal services, monitoring issues of process and rule of law, and building legal capacity in Greece. Volunteers travel to Lesvos to help asylum seekers with first instance interviews and family reunification with support from ELIL, which has provided free legal assistance on Lesvos through its team of full-time Greek asylum lawyers and volunteers since July 2016.

Haya Moubaydeen, associate in Dentons’ Amman office who travelled to Lesvos, said, “I was moved to act when I saw families, who have already gone through so much, being forced to live in overcrowded and difficult conditions. It was heart-wrenching to witness their plight but very rewarding to be able to help, even if in a small way.”

Bas Legger, associate in Dentons’ Amsterdam office who also travelled to Lesvos, added, “I am happy to have been the first lawyer to participate on behalf of Dentons in the Greece Pro Bono Collaborative. This project combines the strengths of six international law firms to support European Lawyers in Lesvos. At the time I went to Moria, there were 13,000 people in a camp with room for 3,100. When you walk past the tents in Moria and listen to the stories of the people there, it’s hard not to be thankful for what we have and want to help those in need.”

ELIL is a joint initiative of the Council of Bars and Law Societies of Europe (CCBE) and the German Bar Association (DAV). Dentons has provided pro bono support to ELIL since its inception and advised ELIL on its legal structure and implementation in nine European jurisdictions, which culminated in ELIL’s incorporation in Germany as a charitable limited liability company.

Advisory firm Avonhurst boosts practice with associate hires

Avonhurst today announced four new associate hires, cementing the rapid growth that has characterised its first year. Senior associate Joshua Swerner joins the firm from Linklaters, where he spent time in the London and Moscow offices; Tanya Macrae joins from Allen & Overy (Brussels and London) and has worked at both Latham & Watkins and Herbert Smith Freehills; Oliver Elsaesser joins as an associate from Paul Hastings and Katja Loncaric joins from the London office of Norton Rose Fulbright, having previously worked in Clifford Chance’s Frankfurt office.

Avonhurst is a political risk and legal advisory firm dedicated to representing sophisticated capital. Since its launch in July 2019 by founding partner Jonathan Bloom, the firm has attracted a raft of established talent, including seven partner hires – mostly from magic circle firms – as well as hiring four leading figures from the political, financial and legal sectors as senior advisers, including Lord (Gavin) Barwell, tech entrepreneur Sean West, General, the Lord (Nick) Houghton, Blackstone’s Andrew Dowler and Tina Fordham (Partner and Head of Global Political Strategy), formerly of Citigroup.

These have been complemented by the additions of high yield specialist Albert Aharonian (previously at Milbank, Paul Hastings and Sidley Austin), and political expert Jessica Turner who is a US lawyer having joined out of law school and has extensive experience including working on Capitol Hill, Washington DC and at the House of Commons in London.

Jonathan Bloom, Chief Executive of Avonhurst, comments: “We are delighted to welcome Joshua, Tanya, Oliver and Katja to the firm. While we are justifiably proud of our ability to attract established partner talent, we recognise that our long-term sustainability as a leading adviser to sophisticated capital clients requires excellence at every level. We are committed to attracting, nurturing and growing the very best associates.

“Our new hires bring valuable UK and international experience in corporate, antitrust, leveraged, export credit, trade and asset-backed finance, financial services and capital markets, honed at some of the biggest and best law firms in the world. They will work alongside our market-leading partners and advisers to ensure our clients get top-level service across legal, legislative and political advisory, and capital services.”

Continued

Launched in 2019, Avonhurst is dedicated to meeting the changing needs of sophisticated capital by providing a bespoke offering comprising legal advisory, political strategy and capital services. A group of market-leading founders and influencers from the legal world have created a revolutionary advisory business dedicated to helping funds, capital providers, corporate borrowers and issuers, and secured lenders, navigate the complexities of ever-changing markets.